Khulan Onolbaatar: the story, thanks, and farewell for now
Last year we asked our PHSC Community to assist Khulan with international student fees after her mother’s AUSAID postgraduate study funding was withdrawn as a result of government funding changes. Khulan was half way through Year 12 and faced the prospect of not being able to complete her Year 12 studies. The PHSC community rallied to contribute the funding needed for her to stay to complete Year 12.
Khulan remained in Melbourne with her father as carer while her mother returned to Mongolia. We had some tricky times organizing visas: first a bridging visa so she could stay, then an international student visa. Many thanks to Grant McMurdo, Deb Icely and Pauline Gorrie for their assistance with this visa ‘maneuvering’.
Khulan achieved as ATAR of 92.45. She received two raw scores over 40. She achieved an outstanding 41 for EAL (English as an Additional Language) despite arriving in the country less than 2 years before with little English.
Khulan received an International Round offer to Monash Commerce. She wanted to stay here to study. However, we were unable to secure scholarships or financial support as she was not a local student or a refugee. International student education is big business and not really geared for students with financial difficulty. Monash recruitment was very helpful- investigating multiple funding options within the university.
So, in the end, the best solution appeared to be that Khulan return to Mongolia. She departed on 20 January 2017 armed with an excellent VCE result to pursue funding for tertiary study from within Mongolia. She may need to complete or partially complete her undergraduate study before she can move overseas.
From Khulan, her family and friends it is farewell for now. PHSC will keep in touch with her to follow her journey from here. Thanks again to all of you for your support.